Ahmedabad’s Japanese Expats Come Together for a Cultural Evening at AMA - Vibes Of India

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Ahmedabad’s Japanese Expats Come Together for a Cultural Evening at AMA

| Updated: September 2, 2022 20:46

Dressed in saris, salwars and kurtas, Ahmedabad’s Japanese expatriate community turned up in numbers for the “Kem Chhe – Konnichiwa” event organised by the Indo-Japan Friendship Association on Thursday. The occasion was the visit of a delegation from Hyogo, Japan, and the Zen Garden at the Ahmedabad Management Association played host to the event. 

Speaking at the event, Motoyuki Sakiyama, CEO of Otsuka Pharmaceuticals India and head of the Japanese Association Ahmedabad, said there are 236 Japanese expats in Ahmedabad, some recently arrived and some who has lived here for four years.

Yosuke Sasagawa and his wife Kayoko are two recent arrivals. Yosuke, dressed in a striped red and orange kurta for the event, is advisor, HR & Admin, at Suzuki Motor Gujarat and he arrived in Ahmedabad in December. His wife Kayoko arrived last month and she was dressed in a splendid designer sari for the event. This was the couple’s first outing to the city and Yosuke says: “We have settled down in India now. It is wonderful to meet so many people in this beautiful garden.”

Ahmedabad’s links with Japan were demonstrated at the event, with Arjun School of Martial Arts putting on a Karate display, Professor Narendra Pandya engaging everyone in the traditional Japanese art of Origami and Amit Gupta of Bento B restaurant serving up an Indo-Japanese fusion spread for dinner. Yoko Matsuo, one of the Hyogo delegates and a self-confessed Indophile, sang a popular Japanese song. There was also a demonstration of the elaborate Japanese Tea Ceremony.

Mukesh Patel, president of Indo-Japan Friendship Association and the prime mover behind the event, said Ahmedabad’s engagement with Japan has been steadily increasing over the years, as can be seen by the size of the delegations visiting Japan. “The first time, we had only 15 people in the Ahmedabad delegation. This year we have 51,” he said.

The prominent Japanese companies operating in Ahmedabad include Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India, JETRO, Suzuki Motor Gujarat, Daiichi Jitugyo, TDS Lithium ion Battery Gujarat, Mizuho Bank and Otsuka Pharma.  

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